Winter is the worst time to have to replace your furnace, but heating systems usually give advance warning that they’re about to fail. Knowing these warning signs can ensure that you repair or replace your furnace before it leaves you in the cold.

  • Age: The average service life of a furnace is between 15 and 20 years, so if your furnace is around this age, have it inspected by a professional at the start of any issue.
  • Increasing energy bills: As your furnace ages, it loses its efficiency, particularly if it hasn’t been maintained properly, and has to run longer to provide the proper amount of heat. If your energy bills are rising, it may be time to look for a new furnace.
  • Heating problems: A furnace that blows cold air or heats some rooms better than others is not distributing heat properly. This is a major sign that it needs repair or replacement.
  • Noise: The sound of your heating system’s blower switching on and off is normal. Any other noise, such as rattling, squealing, popping or banging, indicates a problem.
  • Frequent failure: Furnace parts tend to fail in the final years of the furnace’s service life. If you’ve had to replace parts on your furnace in the past 2 years, it may be time to shop around for a new furnace.
  • Yellow flame: If your furnace’s burner flame is yellow instead of blue, it may be producing carbon monoxide, which is dangerous to your health. Carbon monoxide poisoning causes symptoms such as nose and eye irritation, headaches, disorientation and dizziness. If you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning, see your doctor immediately and call a professional to inspect your furnace.

If your heating system is showing any of these warning signs and you live in the Greater Cleveland area, contact the pros at Stack Heating, Cooling, Plumbing and Electric for an inspection and expert advice on repairing or replacing your furnace.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Cleveland, Ohio about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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